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Poster: dogsinapile! Date: Feb 17, 2012 9:27am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Non-Dead I'm nervous message to dogsinapile

This morning I woke up in an extremely bad mood. Usually games don't bother me too much either way - I like to see us win, but losing doesn't sting too much. But this one is WAY different.

Around 10:00 to go in the second half, I actually turned to the wife and said something like "We just might pull this one out. Duke has to outscore us by two points per minute to beat us! But Duke always makes a run..."

I knew I should have started to worry during that stretch of fouls at the beginning of the second half. Too many guys with three and too much time to go.

Actually had to have a beer when the game ended...

Hope we don't have a hang-over for Fla State on Saturday. Then it's the Tarholes on Tuesday. By the way, who made this schedule?

Just a few days ago I was feeling really optimistic about a tournament bid, but now I have that same ol' feeling.

But overall, the turn-around and improvement this season comes as a very pleasant surprise and I hope that someday I'll look back on last night and say it was the end of the old ways and the beginning of the new NCSU WOLFPACK era!

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Poster: bluedevil Date: Feb 17, 2012 3:42pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Non-Dead I'm nervous message to dogsinapile

Gotta love the way Gottfried has the kids buying into his system. Fouls killed you guys but if the game had been on a neutral court or in Raleigh no way we win. SUCKS no home and home. Should be mandatory among the Big Four (used to go to the Big Four Tourney as a kid - hell of a way to start the season). You guys should get in the tourney this year and gain much needed experience - and then add the next 3 Mickey D All Americans next year and I think everyone will be able to say THE PACK IS BACK.

We should not have won - nor in Chapel Hill - but we did. Of course, all of Blue Devil nation is pulling hard for you guys at FSU and against the evil shade of blue. Fair summary from Duke Basketball Report:

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ACC Roundup »

Duke Stuns State Late, 78-73
by DBR, February 17th, 2012 | Games Past |

by Jim Sumner

Austin Rivers called Duke’s 78-73 win over North Carolina State a “weird win, a bad win but it’s a great win at the same time.”

That’s a pretty good summation.

For much of the second half, two narratives competed for supremacy on the Cameron floor. In one narrative, Duke loses it third ACC game at home, in less than a month. Duke drops out of first place in the ACC, falls in the polls and imperils its chance at a top seed in the NCAA Tournament.

But there was another storyline, one that prevailed. In this one, a never-say-die group of Blue Devils completes a miraculous comeback, cementing its reputation as the Comeback Kids.

Duke doesn’t have much of a reputation for 20-point comebacks for the simple reason that Duke doesn’t often find itself down by 20. And it’s probably not a habit Duke wants to cultivate.

So, how did Duke find itself staring up from the bottom of a 20-point hole? Mike Krzyzewski said the Wolfpack-playing their first game in a week–”was fresher than us-boom they came at us.”

It was 8-0 State after three minutes. Seth Curry rolled an ankle less than a minute into the game and went to the locker room. Curry returned but played the rest of the game in pain; Krzyzewski called his performance “heroic.”

Miles Plumlee tried for the highlight-reel tomahawk slam on an inbounds and came up empty. Lorenzo Brown banked in a 3 from the top of the circle. C.J. Williams sat down with two early fouls but his replacement Alex Johnson came in and nailed a trio of first-half 3-pointers. This is the same Alex Johnson who came into the game hitting 4-21 from beyond the arc in ACC games.

Josh Hairston put Duke on the board after 3:12. Yes, Josh Hairston scored Duke’s first points.

Duke had some successes inside but couldn’t buy a jumper. State got some blocks early and Krzyzewski said Duke started hearing footsteps. “We started looking for the block. Their defense was really quick.”

Duke was 2-14 on 3s in the first half, State 5-9. Duke was outrebounded, outshot and outscored 46-30.

Duke didn’t have a run in the second half, it had several. The first was a 7-0 surge that cut the lead to 48-37. This took place during a bizarre stretch in which Duke was called for seven fouls in the first 5:07 of the half; State was whistled for four during this span.

But the Wolfpack seemed to have the answers. Reserve DeShawn Painter grabbed an offensive rebound and made two foul shots for 50-37. A few minutes later he had a stickback to make the score 59-41. Then Brown hit two foul shots and it was 61-41, with 11:33 left.

Some poor shot selection by Duke helped the visitors regain control during this stretch.

But Duke just barely maintained contact.

“We had no doubt in our minds that we would win the game,” Rivers said. “The table can turn real quick. Once it does, most teams are going to be real tight. That’s what we did. We got them in situations they weren’t comfortable in.”

Rivers and Curry led the comeback. Krzyzewski said Duke found a couple of things that worked and kept going to them. One of those was Curry-sore foot and all-beating State off the dribble. Curry has been typecast as a spot up shooter but he was much more than that.

Curry was spectacular down the stretch, scoring 21 of his career-high 26 points after intermission.

“Austin and I are going to have the ball in our hand most of the time, so it’s up to us to make the plays,” Curry said. “We needed to stay aggressive and keep the pressure on them.”

Duke cut the lead to nine at 63-54, 65-56, 68-59 and 69-60. State blinked first. The Wolfpack has a seven-player rotation, which isn’t a good thing when three of them are in foul trouble. Williams, Leslie and Howell fouled out. They started missing jumpers, stopped getting offensive rebounds and couldn’t get anything going for Scott Wood.

Duke made stopping Wood a priority. Tyler Thornton and Andre Dawkins deserved much of the credit for holding Wood to a single field goal, and that, a two-pointer.

“If he saw one go down, he can get hot,” Dawkins said. “We tried to limit his open looks, make him turn while he was shooting, not let him get square to the basket.”

Dawkins provided an emotional lift, grabbing four rebounds in traffic, going on the floor for loose balls and playing a physical defense that hasn’t always come naturally to him.

“They were in our place and really beating the crap out of us,” an animated Dawkins said after the game. “That doesn’t sit well with us. I felt like our team needed an energy boast and I tried to give that to us. That was my main focus coming in. It wasn’t about offense, it was about playing hard on the defensive end, lock it up down there.”

Krzyzewski added “hopefully that shows him he can do more than just be a shooter.”

A key sequence took place with Duke down 69-64. Rivers missed a 3 but Curry grabbed the offensive rebound and found Mason Plumlee inside for an off-balance lay-up.

C.J. Leslie dunked off an offensive rebound for 71-66 but this would be State’s last field goal.

Curry answered with a 3, making it 71-69. Rivers gave Duke its first lead on a 3-pointer and Rivers and Ryan Kelly made four foul shots.

Duke also had the goal of wearing down Brown, a task made easier by Williams fouling out in 12 minutes. This meant that Johnson couldn’t spell Brown, who played 38 minutes.

Brown dominated much of the game, scoring 19 points, with five assists. But he air-balled a jumper with 1:49 left and stepped on the sideline with 1:10 remaining.

State had one final chance. Trailing 76-73, Gottfried said the plan was to get Wood open for a 3. But Duke corralled him off several screens and Brown missed badly. Curry ended the scoring with two foul shots.

Krzyzewski and his team will have to address the slow starts that have plagued them at home. But Thursday wasn’t the time for that. “It was an amazing win,” Krzyzewski said. “They thoroughly outplayed us for about 29 minutes and we thoroughly outplayed them for about 11 minutes. It had a lot to do with heart and fight.”